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Ricketts bid for Chelsea gets murkier with unknown party as actual ‘controlling stake’

Huh?

SPORTS-SOC-CHELSEA-RICKETTS-CUBS-TB Photo by Chris Sweda/Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images

A spokesperson for the Ricketts family confirmed on Friday that they will not have a controlling stake in Chelsea even if their bid succeeds against all the backlash that has arose against it. Dennis Culloton however did not reveal who this mystery party holding the “leading share” may be, adding even more shadiness to this whole thing.

“That’s still shaping up and if they’re successful, I’m sure there will be more to be shared on that.”

“[And] there will be a soccer operation and a business operation at Chelsea that will be completely separate but will be under the leadership of the Ricketts family investment group.”

-Dennis Culloton, spokesperson; source: Chicago Tribune via Denver Post

What in the actual?

It’s unclear if this has been the case all along or if it is a response to the backlash from Chelsea fans (including a planned protest at today’s match), or a move to allay fears of Cubs faithful that their owners would take money from their team. But it’s perhaps not coincidence that at the same time we have reports emerging that the “Ricketts bid” — which probably shouldn’t be called that anymore? — would involve a straight cash deal. Does all this point to Ken Griffin being the main man of this operation?

Meanwhile, Thomas Tuchel just wants an amicable resolution, and probably as soon as possible.

“Not sure if I could even tell you the names of the consortiums and new bidders. It is my information that it is down to four and in the next weeks should be further talks and negotiations.

“[But] I’m not sure if they want to [meet me] and I’m not sure if I should. I don’t know if it’s a good idea or a bad idea. Maybe it’s best to be involved — if I am involved — as late as possible.”

-Thomas Tuchel; source: Football.London

As things stand, we’re still on for an April 11 deadline for the second round of bidding and negotiations, and April 18 for Raine Group to pick their preferred bidders.